This weekend I took a trip to Gould, Colorado to support a friend who was running a 100k race. The trip was great and we got to stop at one of the best all vegan buffet’s, Jill’s Restaurant in Boulder. While listening to the Rich Roll podcast featuring vegan athlete Leilani Munter I was inspired by her passion to spread the vegan message and having a carbon footprint lower than most people even while racing NASCAR. ( if you haven’t listened to it I you can click on the link above) She does this by driving an electric car off the race track. Leilani is not only a female in a male dominated sport but her activism for a better world is on another level. The Oceanic Preservation society and The Solutions Projects are two groups she is involved with that are worth taking a look at. Listening to this while driving on the highway had me thinking about my addiction to fossil fuel and the endless stream of cars all hooked on oil. Electric cars are becoming more available and affordable but we still need a massive increase in renewable energy infrastructure to power these vehicles otherwise we are just burning coal rather than oil to power our transportation. Until I have enough money to buy an electric car and charge it with solar my solution is to ride my bike more often, it may not be as fast but is an all around better way to travel in my opinion.
This podcast also brought to mind many other vegan athletes that have or are currently making a difference by raising awareness and spreading compassion. Scott Jurek is a vegan ultra runner and may be one of the best of all time. He is showing that you don’t need to eat animal products to be an elite athlete and has broken all sorts of records in the ultra running community! Kuntal Joisher is an Indian mountain climber and is the first vegan to have climbed Mount Everest from the south side, roughly 2 years after another vegan, Atanas Skatov, successfully climbed it from the north. Kuntal said many people told him that he wouldn’t be able to climb Everest as a vegan and he replied that if he couldn’t do it as a vegan he wouldn’t do it at all, I love his dedication. These are just a few of the many vegan athletes out there that are making a difference and spreading the message to millions.
It is great to see these athletes making positive change and it motivates me to do more. We are all not elite athletes in a position to reach millions of people but there is so much we can do to be a part of the solution. If you are passionate for a cause get creative and raise some money, my partner Carrie was able to raise $24,000 for Mercy for Animals and Compassion over Killing by riding her bike across the great divide trail, covering 3,000 miles over rugged, mountainous terrain, a monumental accomplishment that requires determination, courage and grit not many have. This may not be possible for everyone but find something you are good at and give fundraising a try. Also just by eating vegan and we can save thousands of lives and drastically reduce our carbon footprint, not to mention be a living example for those around us. These ripple effects from our habits rubbing off on others may not be noticeable but it is always happening and you can never know how many lives you are actually touching.
Here are some other resources worth checking out: